Wednesday, 4 March 2015

Coronation Street episode review, Wednesday 4 March 2015

Anna and Owen attend a meeting about a forthcoming school trip to France, but their proximity to an uncomfortable Jackson and his family is too much for Faye who leaves upset. Craig continues to be a marvellous support to her, and their friendship is lovely to watch, despite the unfortunate circumstances.

David agrees to let Callum see Max, but when he arrives to pick up his son, he's not happy to learn he's actually at a friend's house. David tells Callum it was a test to see if he’d turn up. Katie is the only one who seems to believe in him, but her plans to have him over for dinner are thwarted when he insists she go out with her Mam and sister instead. The ladies have an enjoyable evening, and things even appear to have thawed between Owen and Linda as they laugh at old holiday pictures, but Izzy still won’t entertain her father, and Anna is angry that he’s enjoying himself playing happy families.

Over at the community centre, Roy prepares for his first cooking class, and shepherd’s pie is on the menu. One of the myriad things I love about him is that he always knows more about his subject than most, but as he imparts his knowledge of international variants of the dish to Alya, I'm infuriated to see her openly sneer at him. Roy being made little of by others is a very unwelcome pattern I’ve observed of late. A few weeks back the staff of the Bistro had a meeting in the café while it was being renovated and we saw Nick and Steph look disdainfully in his direction. On Monday he became the butt of a joke which amused Gary, Tyrone and Kevin no end concerning a computer game he had understandably never heard of, and we then had to witness Sharif and Michelle snigger at his attempts at driving. 

As I’ve observed before, characters like Roy are not found in every programme, and their welcome inclusion is what makes Coronation Street special and important. If we are to openly demean such characters rather than embrace their originality and excellent qualities, then it does a disservice to both the character and those who are disdainful towards him. Superior characters like Roy should be uniformly celebrated. The scenes aren’t funny, there is a meanness to them which doesn’t sit well with me and they patronise a man who is clearly above such treatment. I hope we see the last of them, as Roy deserves more respect than that.

In any event, with only one allotment space available, Sharif or Roy must triumph via an interview. Determined to succeed, Roy studies for the “high stakes game of horticultural mastermind” describing it as “a kind of gardeners’ high noon without the firearms.” While Alya's expression frustrated me earlier, she did give Roy the vote of confidence over her grandfather which was a welcome touch.

Meanwhile Steph insists on being with Andy when he faces Gavin who is furious having uncovered their fraudulent activity. Such is his disregard for Michael however that he couldn't care less about his father's illness, blanks him to his face in the Rovers, and blackmails Andy and Steph by demanding £5,000 to keep quiet. Andy’s fondness for Michael comes out and it’s clear that he would be a better son to him than Gavin ever would, the latter only seeing the money making opportunities the situation presents. However, no matter how nice Andy is, or Steph for that matter, it's hard to see how anyone could accept either of them in the event that his true identity is revealed. Despite their affability, the gravity of the deception shouldn't be underestimated.

Eileen continues to wow behind the bar at the Rovers, specialising in frequent breaks, insulting customers and putting them off buying drinks. I did laugh out loud at Michelle and Steve confessing to being afraid of her, and while a game of rock paper scissors dictates that Michelle do the firing, she fails miserably.

Failure isn't an option where Ken is concerned. Ever waging war against any mode of intellectual suppression, he insists upon saving Audrey from trashy romance novel Slender Hearts Run Free by presenting her with the less slender Anna Karenina. Judging by her stunned expression, there's a better chance of Ken donning his kimono and getting lost in the pages of her romance novel than there is of her reading a word of his.

By Emma Hynes
www.emmahynes.wordpress.com
Twitter: @ELHynes


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23 comments:

Humpty Dumpty said...

I thought the scene in café with Tyrone and co was just ribbing, particularly as Roy bantered back. Not very well written but also not malicious. I do agree, though, that Roy is still the butt of too many snide remarks and looks. I'd hoped that Carla would turn out to be his 'minder' and he would be rewarded with more respect by the locals. Where is Carla these days? She doesn't seem much involved with Roy even when she's around. Great though it is that Roy will have a new friend, it's a shame that she is also vulnerable. Wouldn't it be nice if he could just have a good pal but, maybe, Sharif will turn out to be that.

vintgal003 said...

Very well written Emma...thank you from the Canadian contingent...

Anonymous said...

Actually the treatment I found more difficult to take last night was that meted out to Ken and Anna Karenina. I think we were supposed to find his literary tastes vaguely ridiculous and sympathise with Audrey. There's a deep vein of anti-intellectualism running through Corrie that seems to survive regardless of who writes or produces it. It's partly why some of the locals also laugh at Roy, and it's what stops Sophie Webster from being allowed to go to university. Higher learning or study are in themselves amusing, apparently. I find that slightly uncomfortable in this day and age.

Frosty the Snowman said...

A few things Frosty didnt understand yesterday. Was Owen standing outside the school when Izzy, Linda and Katy happened to be passing? Why did he disappear and go off with them to look at pictures? Why is Izzy still making a face? I really wish this family would begone. FayE should move in with Sally and Tim.

No doubt Carla will reappear when the factory is in grave danger of closing again only to find yet another rich client to save them.

Frosty the Snowman said...

A question Frosty forgot: How did Gavin know Steph and Andy were in the Rovers or even where it was??

AmandaB said...

Great acting from the real Gavin, he really presents a menacing threat.

Clinkers (David) said...

Lovely review Emma. No idea why Eileen has suddenly been drawn as some kind of workshy loon though"

dolly Tubb said...

Great review, Emma. I agree that the scenes with Ken and Audrey were a bit uncomfortable, why wouldn't Ken recommend one of the world's greatest overs, and why wouldn't Audrey want to read it? There's a great legacy of self education in Salford/Weatherfield, sadly the Book Club was only ever a vehicle for Ian McKellan and never continued afterwards.

Dolly Tubb said...

Soz, should be 'greatest books ever' . Blinkin' predictive text, bet Tolstoy didn't have that problem ;)

Anonymous said...

Does anyone know how the Corrie actors are paid? I know they sign contracts for varying lengths of time, but are they paid by the episode, or by the line, or are they on retainer, regardless of how much they appear? I know they are given some idea of the storyline awaiting them when they're first hired, but after the initial period, once the contract is more long-term, then what? I ask because there's such a discrepancy between the appearances of various characters. Some seem to be in almost every episode, even if only for a line or two, for a long period, then they sometimes seem to disappear for weeks, or even months, whether they're on a requested leave or not. It must be very difficult for the actors to plan other jobs or appearances, not to mention their own finances. Does the payment arrangement change after a certain amount of time: e.g. does Emily, Rita, Audrey or Ken get some sort of retainer, different from Sally, Gail, or Kevin, for example, which in turn is different from Eileen, Julie, Anna, or Owen? In other words, is there a seniority system of some sort, based on age, or how long someone's been on the show?
I keep trying to understand the reasoning behind some of the casting and storyline decisions.

Anonymous said...

I agree with Frosty that the sequence of events between Owen leaving the school and running into I, L & K was a bit hard to follow. It seemed that they met up just outside his front door. Why did he go home and leave Anna and Faye behind?

It wouldn't have been too hard for Realgavin to find Gandy. He had his pay information from the Bistro. He only had to ask there and was probably told to look for him in the Rovers.

I've been wondering whether Eileen in the pub is a set up for her to discover the truth about Tony and Tracey. Of course, Liz won't believe her and will accuse her of being jealous.

Anonymous said...

Anon 6:31 I agree with your comments completely! It never ceases to amaze me why very few of the kids on the street ever inspire to better themselves or even move out of their parents homes. If they do go away to school they return with a different head (Ryan) or a complete jerk(Amber) At one time I think the writers had Chesney supposed to be clever and was being considered for a scholarship to Oakhill. I don't remember what happened with that but there he is separated with a small child living with relatives and in a dead-end job. Perhaps Simon or Craig will have some ambition and go on to school.

Anonymous said...

Was surprised by Jackson, he looks like he bats for the other side.

AmandaB said...

Absolutely I thought exactly the same! Not much thought went I to that casting decision.

Anonymous said...

After reading her excellent review,I agree with Emma's comments about how mean-spirited the Street is becoming particurely with the scenes with Roy and I wonder if some still hold a grudge against him for assaulting Gary?As for Tyrone,I thought it was disrespectful for him to join in Gary and Kevin's ridiculing of Roy.Roy and Hayley have been good friends to Tyrone and Fiz over the years even believing in Tyrone's innocence when he was accused of domestic abuse so it would've been nice if he told Gary[who also should've known better] and Kevin to shut up instead of joining in.

AmandaB said...

I would expect them to be on contract with as you say a 'retainer' type fee - ie a certain fee guaranteed no matter how many/few episodes they appear in.
They wouldn't need to know when they were being used to plan other work, as they would be on an exclusivity contract meaning they can't do other work other than by agreed leave ie when SeanTully did I'm a Celebrity though that would only have been agreed because it was with the same tv channel.

Anonymous said...

Anoynmous,If Eileen working at the Rovers is a set up for her finding out about Tony and Tracy,perhaps she finds out after she's finally fired and keeps quiet out of revenge?
After seeing Liz allow Carla being served by her husband's mistress Tina,I admit I'm enjoying seeing Liz serving her boyfriend's mistress thus getting a bit of comeuppance for keeping quiet about Peter and Tina to protect Tina.

Anonymous said...

I see the treatment of Roy, by the various people mentioned lately, as part of the continuum of disrespect and disregard for learning and education, which is a recurring attitude on the program and a recurring complaint on this blog. Roy loves learning, for its own sake, which makes people around him feel inadequate by comparison, so they find comfort in mocking him, rather than using him as an example and a resource.

Anonymous said...

I'm sick and tired of Todd; let's get rid of malicious characters like him -- doing evil to his own brother and mother! We need Ken and Roy to bond over books or some activity, after Ken learns of Deirdre's death.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 23:02 ...That would be nice to see Ken and Roy find comfort in each other's company and love of learning after both losing their wives.

Canadian watcher said...

Jackson could still bat for the other side when he gets older. Todd and Sarah Louise got pregnant when he was young and a real person.
About laughing at intellectuals, is it any worse than the audience laughing at Jason and Kirky for being at the other end of the knowledge spectrum?

Anonymous said...

One comes from feeling superior, the other from feeling inferior. Is there a better or worse in either situation? Both lead to nasty behaviour.

Louby said...

I agree with the comments about intelligent characters and their storylines. It seems that the characters with reasonable intellect usually turn out to be psychos (eg Richard Hillman, maybe Tony Gordon, Frank) or else they're figures of fun/ridicule like Ken, Roy, Brian (Julie's bf) as well.

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